RetroPie Cheat Codes

Want to upload cheat codes to your RetroPie, Raspberry Pi setup? First, you will need internet on your RetroPie, as well as a separate computer. Once you have the box set with internet you will want to copy down your box’s I.P. address somewhere, you can find the I.P address under RetroPie setup area.

Next, you will need some tools, here are links to download those tools;

  1. Putty
  2. Notepad++

STEP 1: Putty

On Putty, you will need your I.P. address here; Type it in where “Host Name” is and keep the port 22. Save it with a name too for quicker availability in the future if necessary. Login to your Pi through Putty, if you have not changed the credentials, it should be;

  • Username: pi

  • Password: raspberry

Once in, type “cd cheats” and “mkdir settings” on separate lines, without the quotations.


STEP 2: Notepad++

Now find your SAMBA folders that the Pi is sharing, to do that, use File Explorer in Windows and type \\RETROPIE.

Go into the configs/all folder and find retroarch.cfg. When you have found it, right click over it and open with Notepad++. Once in there press ctrl+F and do a search for “cheat”. Scroll down until you come to a line that reads # Path to cheat database directory. Delete the # symbol from it and where it says “cheat_database_path =” add ~/RetroPie/cheats with a space so it should say;

cheat_database_path = ~/RetroPie/cheats

Now go down to the next section where it says “# path to XML cheat config…” and delete the # symbol in front of “cheat_settings_path =” and then add ~/RetroPie/cheats/settings with a space so it looks like this;

cheat_settings_path = ~/RetroPie/cheats/settings

Next, hit ctrl+F again and this time search for “Retropad Button Combination“, when you find it, delete the # symbol on “input_menu_toggle_gamepad_combo” and edit the section like this;

  • # Retropad button combination to toggle menu
  • # 0 = none, 1 = L + R + Y + D-pad Down, 2 = L3 + R3
  • input_menu_toggle_gamepad_combo = 2

Now save it.


STEP 3: Retroarch

Back on Putty, reboot your Pi with the command “sudo reboot” without the quotation marks. You will need to close Putty and start a new session as well.

On your Pi go to RetroPie settings, then Configure Retroarch / Launch Retroarch RGUI. Go to settings–> directory, and see if Cheat File Dir says “/home/pi/Retropie/cheats“. If it does, go ahead and back out to the main menu of the Retroarch Config GUI. Go to “Online Updater” and choose “Update Cheats“. This may take a minute, it should tell you on the bottom left of the screen when it is complete. Once this is done, back out of the config GUI and quit Retroarch.

Now you’re ready to play with what is already setup from the updater. To access Retroarch during games you press select+X, turn the codes on with left/right arrows and be sure to hit “apply changes” at the top by pressing A and/or start. If you want to add your own codes, delete some, or see a list, go to step 4.

STEP 4: Cheats

Back on putty, and logged into your Pi, you can look through, add, or delete cheat codes. Here are the inputs for each system as is;

  • cd RetroPie/cheats/”Game Boy Advance”/”CodeBreaker”
  • cd RetroPie/cheats/”Game Boy”/”Game Genie”
  • cd RetroPie/cheats/”Genesis”/”Pro Action”
  • cd RetroPie/cheats/”Nintendo Entertainment System”/”Game Genie”
  • cd RetroPie/cheats/”Playstation”/”GameShark”
  • cd RetroPie/cheats/”Sega Game Gear”/”Game Genie”
  • cd RetroPie/cheats/”Sega Master System”/”Pro Action Replay”
  • cd RetroPie/cheats/”Sega Saturn”/”GameShark”
  • cd RetroPie/cheats/”Super Nintendo”/”Game Genie”

Once you’re in either one, you can press “ls” for a list of current cheats. To edit or create new cheat file types you use the following;

nano “Game name in quotations, as it is written in the cheat index.cht”

EX: nano “Super Mario Bros.cht”

The format for codes is;

  • cheats = 2
  • cheat0_desc = "Enter a description here"
  • cheat0_code = "GAME GENIE CODE IN CAPS"
  • cheat0_enable = "false"
  • cheat1_desc = "Enter another description here"
  • cheat1_code = "STILL STAYS IN CAPS"
  • cheat1_enable = "false"



Then to save, press ctrl+X, then Y when prompted Yes or No on overwriting the file. If it is just a modified cheat, press enter when done. If it is a new game then it should be listed as the name you had under nano “gamename.cht” with the .cht but not the “nano”


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